O.K. So, I definitely feel that when I am drinking wine every night, my patience is at a negative 12. I have no patience and just tend to act like a lunatic if things don't go my way or how I envision them. Today, I feel like I passed two tests!
On today's status call with a client I got some push back on some pitching I have been doing. I usually get wildly defensive with work criticism. But this time I acknowledged it and said, "you're right. Let's try some different things and I'm open to new ideas," and I moved on. Cool.
Later on I took the kids to a little tumbling place. It's supposed to literally rain cats and dogs - animals will for sure fall out of the sky - and I wanted to give the kiddos an opportunity to get their energy out. Afterwards we went to get lunch where my kids were melting down by the minute.
- I want more chicken
- I want to sit by the window
- I want to play
- I don't want to share my chicken even though my brother now wants chicken and I have more than I ever will eat but I don't want to give him any - and, besides, he's now melting down because he wants his own chicken and not mine anyway
- I want ice cream
I have, of course, given in to my kids just to make life easier for that particular split second in time. As a parent, I also know my job is to teach them life lessons. Every. Single. Day. And I also know enough to understand that they were just tired from jumping around all morning - and even if I did go get more chicken, more ice cream or let them play more, it wouldn't have made too much of a difference.
So I said no. I stood my ground. I did not lose my shit. I held my head high even as I carted out two young kiddos screaming their heads off about all the injustices in the world. They screamed their heads off on the way home.
Normally, I would have screamed back. I would have yelled or spanked or slammed the door. Or whatever. But I had a clear enough head to understand that fighting with two small children isn't going to make anything better.
So I waited until they calmed down and I said, "Do you know why we left? We left because you were not behaving properly in a public space. I know you may be frustrated that you can't sit next to the window or that you don't want to share, but when you scream and whine and cry, I'm not going to turn around and let you play and have ice cream. You don't get rewarded for bad behavior"
And that was it. Seriously, they went on to something else. I hope they understood that I will not give in to tyrannical behavior - maybe they didn't. But at least I feel good about how I handled it and that I now don't have to feel badly about screaming or acting like an asshole myself.
This definitely wouldn't have happened if I was tired from drinking wine last night. Onwards and upwards. And looking forward to Day 13.